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Cherokee Nation prosecutors charge two men with more than 60 counts of wildlife crimes

Friday, January 28, 2022 - The Cherokee Nation Attorney General’s office has filed both a felony count of cruelty to animals and more than 60 misdemeanor counts against two Cherokee Nation citizens accused of multiple wildlife crimes, including illegally hunting and killing 18 whitetail deer in Adair County and dumping the carcasses in Cherokee County. Adair and Cherokee Counties both fall within the Cherokee Nation Reservation.

Charges were filed in Cherokee Nation District Court against Nikolas John Bird, 19, and Ethan Lee Hardin, 18, both of Tahlequah.

In addition to the one count of cruelty to animals, the charges include one count of capture out of season, one count of shooting from the roadway, one count of headlighting, 21 counts of possession of wildlife not legally taken, 18 counts of capture or mutilation of protected wildlife, 18 counts of failure to check deer in as required and eight counts of hunting outside legal hunting hours.

“The Cherokee Nation collaborated with the Oklahoma Department of Wildlife, which investigated this case cooperatively with the Cherokee Nation Marshal Service. We are committed to ensuring that the Nation’s hunting and fishing laws are enforced throughout the Reservation,” Cherokee Nation Attorney General Sara Hill said.

Arrest warrants have been issued for Bird and Hardin.

KXMX News Staff

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